Cardinal Tomáš Špidlík

Cardinal Tomáš Špidlík

Birth
Boskovice, Okres Blansko, Jihomoravský (South Moravia), Czech Republic
Death 16 Apr 2010 (aged 90)
Rome, Città Metropolitana di Roma Capitale, Lazio, Italy
Burial Velehrad, Okres Uherské Hradiště, Zlínský (Zlin), Czech Republic
Plot Royal Chapel.
Memorial ID 51277303 · View Source
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Roman Catholic Cardinal. Born in Boskovice in the then Czechoslovakia, present day Czech Republic, Tomáš Špidlík entered the department of philosophy at the University of Brno before joining the Society of Jesus in Benesov near Prague. His formation saw many interruptions due to the Second World War, mainly because of forced youth labor. Being ultimately ordained priest on August 22, 1949 in Maastricht, Holland, a year later he finished his long formation period as a Jesuit in Florence, Italy. Called to Rome by the Vatican Radio in 1951, from this work sprang a special mission that would always accompany him and that made him known in lands despite their Communist domination. His Sunday homilies in the Czech language have been translated and published in various languages including Polish, Romanian and Italian, as were many of his publications. Defending his doctoral dissertation at the Pontifical Oriental Institute in Rome in June 1955, the latter year marked the beginning of his university career as professor of patristic and Eastern spiritual theology at various Universities in Rome as well as around the world. Spiritual director of the Pontifical Nepomuceno Seminary for thirty eight years, Špidlík was known as one of the greatest experts of the spirituality of Eastern Christianity. Awarded an honorary citizenship by the the cities of Uherský Brod and Troyes in 1993, he preached the spiritual exercises for the Pope and the Roman Curia during lent of 1995, encouraging the Pontiff to write the encyclical 'Ut Unum Sint' on ecumenism issued on May 25 that year. Receiving a doctorate 'honoris causa' from the University of Cluj-Napoca Romania in May 1997, the following December he received another one from the theological department of the University of Olomouc. In October 1998, Václav Havel, President of the Czech Republic, decorated him with the medal of the Order of Masaryk, one of the highest honors of the country while in May 1999, the University of Prague conferred on him a doctorate 'honoris causa'. Pope John Paul II created him cardinal deacon in the consistory of October 21, 2003 with the deaconry of Sant'Agatha dei Goti. Consulter of the Congregation for the Causes of Saints and of the Congregation for the Institutes of Consecrated Life and the Societies of Apostolic Life, Cardinal Špidlík died on Friday April 16, 2010, at 9 pm., at the Centro Ezio Aletti in Rome, which he had founded and where he had resided since 1991. His body was transported to Velehrad in Moravia, a place particularly loved by him because of its relation to the evangelization of Saints Cyril and Methodius, and also because it is considered as a crossroad of peoples and culture. His humanity and rich sense of humor were a gift to all who knew him and in future years might be considered as a candidate for beatification.

Bio by: Eman Bonnici


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  • Created by: Eman Bonnici
  • Added: 18 Apr 2010
  • Find A Grave Memorial 51277303
  • Find A Grave, database and images (https://www.findagrave.com : accessed ), memorial page for Cardinal Tomáš Špidlík (17 Dec 1919–16 Apr 2010), Find A Grave Memorial no. 51277303, citing Římskokatolická Farnost Velehrad, Velehrad, Okres Uherské Hradiště, Zlínský (Zlin), Czech Republic ; Maintained by Eman Bonnici (contributor 46572312) .